Starting in 1985 with a single location on Pacific Highway, Stan Parente proceeded to build a large client base at his eponymous salon, eventually expanding to his current locations in Federal Way, Maple Valley, and Bellevue. Despite the steady march of his hair empire, Parente remains true to the fundamentals that led to his initial success. He still works onsite in each salon and keeps shelves stocked with products from quality brands such as Oribe Hair Care and Bumble and bumble. Professional seminars and practice sessions hone stylists' skills until they can make unkempt hair arrange itself with a single, intimidating glance. Each location boasts its own unique aesthetic: Federal Way is decked out in vibrant yellow walls and high ceilings, Maple Valley sports rich wooden floors and brick walls, and the newly remodeled Bellevue branch is kitted out with corrugated-metal stations and unvarnished, wooden walls.
The skilled tress tamers at Chocolates, Cherries & Blondes shear, shade, and mold manes with singular products in an upbeat, airy setting. Lemon walls envelop the studio's hanging mirrors as clients’ frazzled follicles receive a stress-relieving complimentary head massage before each treatment. During a one-hour haircut, a stylist shampoos out oil, dirt, and fruit headdresses to invigorate scalps, then clips and reconstructs head hedges with face-framing layers, a reverse Bobby Darin, or an eye-catching tri-hawk ($20+ for men, $30+ for women). Transform ’dos with a mini foil ($40+), vibrant all-over color ($60+), or partial-foil ($70+) or full-foil treatments ($90+), generating radiant locks that give off sparks when placed inside a microwave.
Under the expert guidance of Dr. Cynthia L. Cote, the staff at MD Cote Medical, Laser & Spa harness the FDA-approved Zerona cold-laser technology, designed to reduce corporeal circumferences by an average of 3.5 inches. During each session, clients relax beneath a beam-slinging apparatus for 40 minutes as it glides low-light lasers over their waistline, back, hips, and thighs, emulsifying adipose tissue so that fat can sneak its way out of the body. The disintegrated lipid depots can then be absorbed by the body’s obsessively tidy lymphatic system and expelled through the body’s natural detoxification process and complex system of water-slides. The noninvasive treatment does not require any recovery time.
When Elle · A Clinical Day Spa first opened in 1997, its therapists specialized exclusively in massage. But soon, they saw that what the average guest needed most was not a standalone massage appointment, but an immersive, multifaceted experience that could undo the stress that bombards them on a daily basis. Owners Leigh Shaw and Polly Tabares, who have experience in the spa industry and the fields of dermatology and plastic surgery, rethought their approach and expanded their services into both traditional spa therapies and med-spa treatments.
Today, Leigh and Polly oversee everything from body wraps and facials to Botox injections and prescription skincare. They also maintain a stash of products for at-home care, stocking lines such as Dermalogica and bareMinerals by Bare Escentuals. For frequent guests, they coordinate VIP memberships that offer perks such as service discounts and massages that harness the rejuvenating power of phoenix tears.
As a former model, The New Look For You founder Mimi Lee-Grier knows beauty isn’t as easy as magazines make it look. But she also knows the behind-the-scenes tricks that make it seem so effortless. Permanent cosmetics, eyelash extensions, and eyebrow tinting are three low-maintenance methods she uses to make eyes bigger, lips fuller, and lashes more seductive—effects that won’t smear or fade while swimming, crying, or both. She also reconditions skin with facials, uses her oil-painter’s hand to apply traditional makeup, and swaddles guests in the deep heat of infrared body wraps.